The Bull Shot is a drink for acquired tastes, one that you will either love or hate. Though it was a big hit in the 60s and 70s, the Bull Shot is making a surprising comeback as it appeals to drinkers looking for that retro vibe.
What is the Bull Shot? Well, if you take the tomato juice out of the Bloody Mary and replace it with beef broth or consommé, you have a Bull Shot. Just like our favorite brunch drink, it can be spiced and flavored to your taste.
You may even want to join Bull Shot fans who enjoy it warm in the winter. In that aspect, it's a lot like drinking spiked soup.
- Pour the ingredients into a cocktail shaker filled with ice.
- Shake well.
- Strain into an old-fashioned glass filled with ice.
- Top with a bit of fresh ground pepper.
Beef Bouillon or Consommé?
Many Bull Shot fans enjoy the drink with good old-fashioned Campbell's Beef Broth while others prefer a bouillon or consommé. What's the difference?
- Beef broth and bouillon are, essentially, the same. Bouillon is French for broth.
- Beef broth is made with meat while beef stock is made with bones.
- Beef consommé is a thickened soup made from broth.
- Some beef broth (like the traditional Campbell's) can contain too much salt. Be careful in your choices.
Which should you choose? Each option is going to create a slightly different drink and it's going to be a personal choice. I would recommend trying it with both broth and consommé to see which you enjoy most.
How Strong is the Bull Shot?
If you're seeking a drink that will warm you up, the Bull Shot's a good choice. It's neither the lightest or the strongest drink and there's something soothing about this savory drink that adds to its appeal.
When made according to this recipe, it has an alcohol content of around 14% ABV (28 proof). That's just enough to warm the bones and because of its soup-like taste, it's likely you won't have too many.
The Bull Shot's a Retro Drink
The story of the Bull Shot began around 1952 at Detroit's Cactus Club. It wasn't long before the Hollywood set caught wind of this odd drink and by 1957 it exploded on the scene.
In any sense, the Bull Shot was not a normal drink though for some reason it remained popular through the 1980s. This was the era of three-martini lunches and classy drinks that have since been revived by the TV show "Mad Men," so how did a drink with beef broth (of all things) come to be such a hit?
It's really one of the sensations in the drink world that we might not ever be able to explain. The Bull Shot did make an appearance on the TV show "Dr. Kildare" in the 60s and again in the 1971 movie "A Clockwork Orange." The drink was a part of popular culture and maybe that alone led to its rise.
A reader once shared a story about her parents enjoying a Bull Shot while tailgating at Chicago Bears games in the 1960s. And countless other tales about this weird drink can be found.
For some odd reason, it worked and it still works for drinkers seeking a touch of nostalgia in a glass. It's simply one of those interesting and fascinating drink stories that we love to recall.